13" or 15" rMBP

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jms999, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. jms999 macrumors newbie

    Aug 11, 2014
    So I am getting ready to purchase my first ever Mac. Actually I did try one about 15 years ago and couldn't handle it coming from Windows so I was done with it after a week. I have heard that OSX is way easier to use then the Mac operating systems from a decade + ago so I assume someone like myself who is technically competent should be able to figure it out, at least I hope so.

    I have read a lot of posts on here that have been very helpful. I see tons of what should I get posts without essential info, so I won't waste anyones time....

    Info on what I will be using it for:

    I am a law student and will be done with school in Dec and will then use my Mac Book Pro both to practice and at home.

    I currently have a 15" windows 7 laptop

    I don't do any gaming.

    I do like to do some video editing for leisure and am interesting in getting into photo stuff at some point. I also play guitar and am interesting to check out garage band.

    As far as the 13" I was looking at the base model and everything I read says 128gb seems to be way too small. I have no issue getting a USB drive but I have heard that SSD is VERY fast. $200 seems like a lot for such a small upgrade but not much I can do except complain about it. I am definitely upgrading to 16gb of RAM so no questions about that.

    So essentially I am looking at the 13" 256gb/16gb RAM or

    the base model 15" rMBP.

    The 15" base model has the upgrades I was going to get in it to start, its just a $300 price difference.

    I know that the 15" has the quad core i7 and a friend told me it is very fast. Is it that noticeable a difference from the base processor on the 13"?

    I don't travel more than a few times a year and currently have a 15" so not sure that portability is too big of a concern, although I will say that the 13" did seem a lot more portable even just 2" smaller.

    When I was at the Apple store I noticed the 15" palm pad area was massive and I am concerned it will be bothersome to type on. Perhaps it just takes getting used to, or perhaps it will be fine. Hard to tell from just a few minutes messing around with it in the store.

    I have read here that a lot of people have both models and hook them up to external monitors which of course then means adding on a keyboard and mouse.

    I appreciate those on here who mentioned looking into homeowners policy add ons vs. Apple Care and found the same thing, insurance policy is less than $50 a year and covers ANYTHING that happens with ZERO deductible, seems like Apple Care is worthless compared to that.

    Id also like to know if anyone here has experience with the G-Form case. Based on what I read and watched from their demos it seems like a great case and well worth the cost to protect my investment.

    Thanks in advance for any replies. A real helpful community here!
  2. nostresshere macrumors 68030

    Dec 30, 2010
    First thing... scroll down through postings from the past week. Same question has been asked and discussed many times.

    From what I have read, and just moving myself form a 13 to 15...

    Get the 15"
    Get 256 - very little extra cost, but you will have

    As to using at work... what software will you be running most of the time? If it is windows based, you can use it on a mac - but not sure if that is the best way to go. Think through that.
  3. mojito macrumors member

    Aug 8, 2014
    Go the 15. The space by the trackpad may look big, but it's perfect for your wrists to lay on when it's in your lap. Also, if you're doing video editing or you'e going to use it a lot, the extra screen space will be much appreciated by your eyeballs.
  4. Freyqq macrumors 601

    Dec 13, 2004
    both 13 and 15 are powerful enough for what you want to do. I'd still get the 15", as the extra screen space is great for legal research and writing. The extra power will also make it "feel" fast for longer, so you'll end up keeping it for a longer period of time.
  5. bonnie7168 macrumors newbie

    Jun 5, 2014
    Don't forget to check on the educational discounts for whichever macbook you purchase.
  6. krabdb macrumors newbie


    Apr 29, 2014
    Got the 13''! This damned 15'' palm pad takes pain my wrists every day, when I typing more than half-hour. And with 15’’ keyboard creak will be your constant companion.
    Look at the photos of my wrists after half an hour to print on my 15''

    Attached Files:

  7. stylinexpat macrumors 65816


    Mar 6, 2009
    Did you shave your wrists?
  8. Skylitfly macrumors 6502a

    May 3, 2014
    I'm not sure how getting 13" would solve that problem. Their physical shape is exactly identical except 13" is smaller. And they are both just as thick. If you can even call rMBP's thick.

    Personally I've never had that problem with my 15" rMBP and I find it's extremely thin profile very comfortable. Especially compared to my older laptops.
  9. Sheza macrumors 68000


    Aug 14, 2010
    Cambridge, UK
    "I don't travel more than a few times a year"

    May I ask why you thus want to invest in a heavy duty protection case?
  10. illusionx macrumors 6502

    Jul 4, 2014
    Brossard, QC

    You aren't supposed to lay your wrist on the palm rest while typing. That could solve your problem.
  11. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    You need need 16GB in the 13" rMBP, 8 will be fine. Watching videos, writing papers it no the sort of work that would push the laptop to the point where 16GB of ram is needed.

    I have a 15" rMBP and the palm rest does not bother me, I like the 15" over the 13 because of the increased screen real estate. If you can live with the smaller scene doing what you need to do, then its not a bad deal.
  12. nostresshere macrumors 68030

    Dec 30, 2010
    Okay, I am typing this and my wrist is on the computer.

    Where should they be?
  13. Sheza macrumors 68000


    Aug 14, 2010
    Cambridge, UK
    I do believe krabdb was talking about the palm rest.

    Look here - krabdb do you rest your wrists on the black areas? Obviously you don't own these back pads but you rest your wrists on the areas under the pads, right? (Which seems natural).

  14. Sirmausalot macrumors 6502a


    Sep 1, 2007
    You will be much better off with the 15" screen. More information on the screen is better. Especially if you will do any video or photo editing. The 13" is good if you specifically need the portability.
  15. SWAN808 macrumors member

    Nov 28, 2010
    13 for portability - 15 for comfort and screen space

    dont knock 13s - its a nice size - but for less critical work
  16. Naimfan Suspended


    Jan 15, 2003
    If you're going to use it for practice, 15" all the way.

    Just try to have multiple Lexis and Westlaw tabs open along with a motion you're working on - the 13" is just too small.

    And the portability argument is specious.
  17. jms999 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 11, 2014
    can't decide!

    I know both will be great computers and an upgrade over my current Windows laptop but I can't make a decision on the 13 vs. 15.

    By the way those palm pads are less than worthless! I tried them out a few months ago and they have barely any padding at all and made essentially no difference. An external keyboard and beanbag type wrist rest was a million times better for comfort.

    Im curious if many with the 13 use an external monitor? I am thinking that may be the way to go.

    Also, I plan to do some video editing for leisure not work. Is there anything that the base 13" i5 can't do vs the 15" quad core? Or are we simply talking about tasks taking a few more minutes to complete like rendering. Like I said I am planning on getting the 16gb of RAM on the 13 for sure if I go with that one.

    And as for the person that asked why I want a case like the one I mentioned, for $70 or $80 it seems well worth it to protect an investment in a $1500 or $2000 laptop along with having insurance on it! Despite being careful, things happen. Small price to pay for piece of mind.

    The 15" palm pad does seem massive with that space between it and the keyboard.

    Can anyone post exact measurements of the palm pad and from the front of the computer to the bottom of the keys on both the 13 and 15.

    My current computers palm pad is 3.5 inches and its 4 inches from the front of the computer to bottom of the spacebar and its a little large than Id like.

    Both seem like great computers but its a big investment and a tough decision to make.
  18. illusionx macrumors 6502

    Jul 4, 2014
    Brossard, QC

    Well.. When I had my typing courses back in grade school, the wrists aren't supposed to be resting on the palm rest whine typing. I know everyone do though..
  19. darkcoupon macrumors regular

    Aug 8, 2012
    I just switched to a new 13" rMBP from an older 15" MBP. A big concern was adjusting to a smaller screen size, but I have been using my 15" on a 24" monitor at home for years and, honestly, I haven't noticed any negative differences after switching to the 13". When it's connected to the monitor I only use the 13" screen for mail and iTunes, which don't require a large screen, and I use the 24" for Photoshop and any other tasks. I actually love the fact that it's smaller than my old computer. I find myself using it more often and in more places than I ever used my 15", and it's perfect for the office and meeting with clients. Although I would love the CPU and graphics power of the 15", it would have been overkill for me and I would have regretted spending an additional $700+ on a computer that I probably would not have enjoyed as much.
  20. wtjk macrumors newbie

    Jul 12, 2014
    Get the 15", there's no turning back once you've looked at the beauty that the 15" model embodies.

    This is coming from someone who returned a refurb 13". I found the screen estate too small to do serious college work. It's fine if you want to hook up to an external monitor, but I'd rather do work on my laptop most of the time. Also, I'm typing pretty comfortably on the Mac so I don't see how the edge of the laptop's gonna cut your wrists. Unless you have pretty short hands, that, I don't know.
  21. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    As I mentioned get the 15" since Apple has a 14 day return period, buy it and use it. If the palm rest is bothering you, then exchange it for a 13".

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